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Wine Storage Blog

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  1. Wine in a Box? How Fancy!

    Wine in a Box? How Fancy!

    If you've seen the film Grumpier Old Men, what was your reaction when Walter Matthau introduced Sophia Loren to wine in a box?  While boxed wines used to be cheap and über sweet White Zins (or fruit-flavored abominations!), today there are some boxed wines that are pretty decent.  I've been pleasantly surprised by a few at recent tastings, those...
  2. Cellar Space for Wine Cases

    Cellar Space for Wine Cases

    If purchased by the case, most people want to keep their wines stored in their original cases.  Unpacking and storing identical bottles on regular racks can be a waste of precious bottle space.  Therefore, if you plan to purchase wine by the case, it’s important that your wine cellar be able to accommodate wine cases.  Because wine cases vary in...
  3. Cool It! Time to Check Your Wine Cooling Unit

    Cool It! Time to Check Your Wine Cooling Unit

    Summer is in full swing!  And during the summer, increased temperatures often cause wine cellar cooling units to work longer and harder hours.  While most cooling units are expected to last five years if running continuously, the majority of cooling units (those run only when needed) function for many, many years beyond this grave estimate.  However, the time may eventually...
  4. What’s the Optimal Wine Storage Temperature?

    What’s the Optimal Wine Storage Temperature?

    As we’ve discussed in previous blogs, the temperature at which a wine is stored (and served) can bring out the best (or worst) of a given bottle, but an entire wine collection can be at stake if “ideal” storage temperatures are not maintained.  Many big collections have been unnecessarily damaged because of such unstable temperatures.  For example, temperatures above 65ºF...
  5. Wine Review: Oracle of the Wind Western Cape Sauvignon Blanc 2009

    Wine Review: Oracle of the Wind Western Cape Sauvignon Blanc 2009

    This delicate white hails “from the sun, the rain, the wind, and the soil” of South Africa.  Though described as a “light yellow with flashes of green,” my glass appeared a surprising golden yellow of medium intensity, usually indicative of mature, concentrated whites.  Being a very affordable wine (I only paid $7.99 for a bottle), I knew not what to...
  6. When the Lights Go Out: Keeping Your Wine Safe in Hurricanes & Other Power Outages

    When the Lights Go Out: Keeping Your Wine Safe in Hurricanes & Other Power Outages

    Residents of the East Coast recently experienced the wrath of Hurricane Irene.  For the fortunate individuals who did not incur serious property damage and flooding, there were other issues to contend with: power outages.  Some storms can leave areas without power for days, meaning your wine cooling units will not operate.  And who wants to see a multi-thousand dollar investment...
  7. Wine Review: Casa Julia Sauvignon Blanc 2009

    Wine Review: Casa Julia Sauvignon Blanc 2009

    The affordable Casa Julia Sauvignon Blanc 2009 is a delicious white that hails from Chile’s Aconcagua region.  Similar to a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, but with tamer acidity, this wine is full of vitality and great, well-blended flavors.  Following a full, satisfying nose, the wine delights the tongue with lush fruit, tropical fruit flavors, and tasteful citrus notes.  With good body...
  8. Chardonnay Clam Sauce

    Chardonnay Clam Sauce

    Here’s a simple and delicious clam sauce recipe that's perfect for pasta, and perfect for the fall.  You’ll need: 2 Tbsp. Butter 2 Tbsp. Olive Oil (Extra Virgin is usually best) 1 1/2 Tsp. Fresh, Minced Garlic 1/2 Cup Chardonnay 1 Pinch Salt 1 Pinch Black Pepper 8 to 12 Fresh Clams in Shells (or a can of baby clams...
  9. Fun Wine Trivia

    Fun Wine Trivia

    Did you know that California is the 4th largest producer of wine in the world?  The three top manufacturers are France, Italy, and Spain. When aged, red wines often fade, eventually turning a rusty, brick red color.  White wines, however, become more golden with age before darkening to brownish yellow. When a wine is paired with food, the food and...
  10. French & American Oaks for Aging Wine

    French & American Oaks for Aging Wine

    Aging wine in oak barrels is expensive.  A single, 55-gallon barrel can easily cost more than $1,600.  Barrels made from oak found in the forests of Allier, Nevers, Limousin, and central France are worth even more.  What makes these barrels so costly?  Are wineries paying for the quality of wood, craftsmanship, or both?  The answer is: both; wineries pay for...
  11. Wine Bottle History

    Wine Bottle History

    When we talk about aging wine, rarely do we realize just how recent a phenomenon wine aging actually is.  As mentioned in a previous post (Fun Wine Trivia), wine was not originally stored in bottles.  And when wine was not transported in animal wineskins, it was stored in large clay containers and secured with sealants called terracotta amphorae. While these 7000...
  12. How Red Wine is Made, Today

    How Red Wine is Made, Today

    Today, most red wines are produced using a process similar to this one... First, a vintner decides when the grapes are ripe.  This is done by taste, concurrent with today's technology of taking accurate sugar readings.  The grapes are then harvested and placed into a machine that removes their stems.  The machine also crushes them (without pressing them) so that...
  13. To Cork, Bag, or Seal Another Way?

    To Cork, Bag, or Seal Another Way?

    In 2011, over 60% of the most popular domestic wine brands were sealed with natural cork.  This statistic comes from the Cork Quality Council, a Napa-based organization.  Based on surveys of A.C. Nielsen data, the executive director of the Quality Cork Council, Peter Weber, claims that there has been “a sharp increase in the sale of wine sealed with cork.” ...
  14. eSommelier: a New Way to Organize Your Wine Collection

    eSommelier: a New Way to Organize Your Wine Collection

    Technology has certainly been keeping the wine world on its toes!  With the latest wine app releases, to devices with unparalleled scanning, pairing, and locating capabilities, what new wine gadgets will they think of, next?  Here is one that we find quite a catch!  It’s called the eSommelier, and it’s a complete wine collection management system.  Perfect for people...
  15. Top 5 Wine Storage Mistakes

    Top 5 Wine Storage Mistakes

    Let’s face it, people make mistakes.  And when it comes to wine storage, a lot of people make innocent mistakes that end up costing them a few (or more!) good bottles of wine.  Here's how to avoid some common wine storage blunders. The Top Five Wine Storage Mistakes 1. Storing wine upright.  If you store wine with your bottles standing...
  16. What’s Vintage Port?

    What’s Vintage Port?

    Just as aged tawny ports are created from the “best” harvests, vintage port is made from only the finest harvests.  In fact, vintage port is the most desirable of all port wines, and collectors often proclaim vintage ports to be the pinnacles of their collections.   Vintage ports are very full-bodied wines with an abundance of sturdy tannins that make...
  17. Has My Wine Gone Bad?

    Has My Wine Gone Bad?

    If you’ve been drinking wine for a while, you've most likely encountered a bottle that has gone bad somewhere along the line.  Unlike wines that simply taste "less-than-good," bad bottles taste unbelievably bad!  What causes such ruined wine?  Here are a few factors... A Bad Cork: Bad corks are the number one cause of “bad” wine.  If stored improperly (upright...
  18. Five Ways To Use Empty Wine Bottles

    Five Ways To Use Empty Wine Bottles

    I'll admit it: I go through a lot of wine bottles. I love drinking the wine, but there's something I really hate about tossing all those bottles in the recycling bin. Luckily, creative people all over the web are one step ahead of me. They've found tons of creative ways to transform old wine bottles into cool crafts and works...
  19. Wine Pronunciation Guide

    Wine Pronunciation Guide

    Image credit: Dave Morrison Photography Raise your hand if you've ever avoided ordering a bottle of wine at a restaurant because you couldn't pronounce the name. Bookmark our wine pronunciation guide and never fear embarrassing yourself again! Alvarinho: ahl-vah-ree-nyoh Albariño: al-bah-ree-nyoh Barbaresco: bar-bah-RES-coe Barbera: bar-BEH-rah Barolo: bar-ROW-lo Beaujolais: boh-zhuh-LAY Bordeaux: bohr-DOH Brut: BROOT Cabernet Franc: KA-behr-nay-FRAHNGH Cabernet Sauvignon: ka-behr-NAY so vihn-YOHN Cava: KAH-vah Chablis: sha-BLEE Chardonnay: shar-doh-NAY Châteauneauf-du-Pape: shah-toh-nuhf-doo-PAHP Chenin Blanc: SHUH-ihn BLAHNGK Chianti: key-AWN-tee...
  20. Wine Dispensing Best Practices

    Wine Dispensing Best Practices

    WineKeeper's Magnum 8 Bottle You found that perfect wine while tasting at a sun-soaked vineyard years ago. You carefully carried a bottle home and placed it in your wine cellar. You monitored the temperature and humidity. You researched and thought about when the right time to open it. Finally, tonight's the night: it's time to uncork that bottle and...

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